Saturday, July 9, 2011

Human Nature and the 10 Commandments

The 10 Commandments are full of thou shalt's and shalt not's. They were given to Moses after Israel was freed from the bondage of slavery. (Ex. 20:2) But they are not meant just as rules to be followed. They also help us understand how we are meant to be as human beings. (Rom. 7:13) Breaking any one of the commandments not only is an infraction against God’s will, (1 John 3:4) but it also diminishes our joy because we are not living up to our nature as God intended. Like the singer who cannot sing, or the artist who cannot create, our joy will be lacking if we do not fulfill our God given nature!

The first four commandments define our relationship with God. We are to live for Him and not ourselves. To make anything more important than God or define Him on our terms is idolatry. Worshipping something that is false make us false! (2 Kings 17:15) The next six commandments show how we are to treat others from our parents to our neighbor. This we all know. But let us look at the Decalogue as descriptive of human nature for we do not want to be false but true to who we are meant to be!

We are created in God’s image. (Gen. 1:27) Remember the Fall occurred when the first humans did not follow God’s Word. Shame took away their joy.  Today we often lack joy because we are not living up to the image God has intended for us. Taken as whole, we can see that the 10 Commandments reflect how we are to be as God’s creatures. We are to be honest, content with what we have trusting God for our needs. God is the source of our life and He should be the beginning and end of our devotions. We are meant to be centered in Him and not in ourselves. When we behave less than how God intended for us to be, we are not in a happy state.

The Good News is that Christ helps us be the persons God wants us to be. It is He who works in us fulfilling God’s will in our lives. (Phil. 2:13) Our joy comes from the knowledge that we have a Helper (Rom. 8:26-30) and that we are growing closer to our Heavenly Father on our earthly journey. (Luke 15:20) We can trust that our debts have been paid on the Cross and with that knowledge live a life fulfilling God’s desires as God molds us back into His image of us. To Him alone be the glory!